Monday, June 27, 2016

Bill Watterson As A Prophet

Last night, my nephew called my attention to the hilarious but pretty frightening practice some people have taken up of taking old Calvin and Hobbes cartoons and pasting Donald Trump's head on Calvin's body to horrifically uncanny results.  It is so frightening because we could be facing the prospect of someone with Calvin's worst personality traits and none of his charm could be the president of the United States and a terrifyingly large percentage of Americans are OK with that, including much of the media.  

The media created Donald Trump, they've earned our distrust, fully and completely.

You can find them online, there are lots of them.  This one, I hope, is a portent of what will happen by election day.

Only Trump won't be the one who admits that's what he's been doing his entire life.

I liked Bill Watterson's strip while it ran and I have a lot of respect for his choices to step entirely out of the spotlight of fame.   I admire his choice to not commercialize his characters.   I hope this is OK with him because it is a tribute to his insight.  If it isn't I'll take it down.

Sunday, June 26, 2016

Hadda Brooks - I've Got The World On A String

From what I can figure, this was when she was in her mid 80s, about a year before she died.
I don't care what people who rely on inaccurate distortions of what I said think they think about what I said.  It is of no importance to me. 

Hadda Brooks - What Have I Done?

Out of the Blue 

Bully Wully Boogie

She was certainly a versatile artist, performing very well in many styles.  I'm just starting on reading Walter Mosley's Easy Rawlins books, this helps get me in the mood.

"..we have to make a difference between depression and sadness"

There is so much that is good in Krista Tippett's discussion with Pauline Boss that the only way to do it justice is to listen to the entire, unedited thing.  Here are a couple of things from the transcript that are especially good.

... DR. BOSS: That's part, again, of a culture of mastery, a culture of problem-solving and wanting to move on with things. Elizabeth Kübler-Ross found those five stages to be relevant to people who are dying, who are fading into death.

MS. TIPPETT: Right. Not someone who's at the loss end of that death.

DR. BOSS: No. She did not mean that for the family members, but, in fact, it blurred over into that. And I don't know if that was her, or I think it was more so her followers. Today, the new research in grief and loss does not recommend linear stages. We like linear stages, though — and the news media really likes it — because, in fact, it has an ending. It has a finite end.


DR. BOSS: If you start with stage one, and you move on through stage five...

MS. TIPPETT: You'll finally get to acceptance.

DR. BOSS:'re done. You're no longer grieving. Well, we now know that this is not true and that human beings live with grief and, in fact, are able to live with grief. They don't have to get over it. They don't obsess with it five years down the road, but they occasionally remember and are sad, or go to the grave, or have some thoughts about the person who died. And this is normal. So, we now know that living with grief is more oscillations of up and down. And those ups and downs get farther apart over time, but they never completely go away, the downs of feeling blue, of feeling sad.

MS. TIPPETT: Mm-hmm.

DR. BOSS: And in order to understand this, though, we have to make a difference between depression and sadness.

MS. TIPPETT: Right, right. To say that sadness is not depression.

DR. BOSS: And so far, that hasn't been made. [laughs]


DR. BOSS: Yes. Depression is an illness that requires a medical intervention. It's the minority of people who have depression. And yet, with the ambiguous loss of let's say Alzheimer's disease and 50-some other dementias, caregivers are said to be depressed. Most of the caregivers I have met and studied and treated are not depressed; they're sad. They're grieving. And this should be normalized. And sadness is treated with human connection.

[When is the last time you heard someone admit to being sad instead of depressed?   You have to wonder how we were talked into medicalizing our every day, non-pathological experience and what the motive for us accepting that was.]

MS. TIPPETT: Mm. So, one of the things that you say — and this makes so much sense, but it's the kind of thing that makes sense — we have to say it — that people can't cope with the problem until they know what the problem is.

DR. BOSS: Yes.


I think there is some really awful aspect of the worship of science that we try to fit stuff into the language of science that doesn't fit and never will fit into it.   We have learned to feel uneasy and dissatisfied and scared of things that we can't stow away into neat categories.


... DR. BOSS: Yes. We just have to stop pressuring people to get over it. It's cruel, actually, to do that. I was critical of the news media about their yearning for closure. They like the word “closure.” But I have to say that once, listening to CNN, Anderson Cooper stopped the other reporters and said, “That's a bad word. There is no such thing as closure.”

And I just loved him for that. And I know from his own biography that he knows what loss is, and he understands that there is no closure. So he's the only reporter I've ever heard explain that in the line of his work. And I think the rest of us have to do a better job of it too.

MS. TIPPETT: Mm-hmm.

DR. BOSS: There is no such thing as closure. We have to live with loss, clear or ambiguous. And it's OK. It's OK. And it's OK to see people who are hurting and just to say something simple. “I'm so sorry.” You really don't have to say more than that.

Saturday, June 25, 2016

You Can't Denominate Something as Definitive Without Using the Definite Article

Now, isn't that an interesting problem.  How can a performance designated as "definitive", that is defining what a specific work of music is in its ideal form, be qualified with the indefinite article "a". Something which is "definitive" must be the definition of what it is, there can't be more than one.  To designate something as definitive would require the DEFINITE article.

The only way I can see for that to make any kind of logical sense is if there were more than one "definitive performance" which was identical in every detail which, in live performance or even a recording and editing of a performance is impossible to achieve.  And, as I pointed out, the only time that happens is with a piece of music which exists in its final form, defined as such by the composer, as a recording.  Even a composer who might say that a particular recording of one of their works is "definitive" would likely not do it that way themselves if they performed it again.

As Carl Nielsen died when young Lenny was 13 and, from what I can see, several decades before he ever recorded even one of his works, you're all wet, as always.  I wouldn't say you are the definitive musical meat head but I'd certainly never say that you are a definitive meat head but not because you aren't an adequate approximation of one.

I can say that there could be such a thing of the definitive score of a work, but it would have to be the product, so designated, by its composer and I'm not aware of too many who have done something like that.  And, unless they died, I would bet that they would, eventually, get around to changing a detail or more.

Any performance is definitely NOT definitive the extent to which it departs from or violates the stated intentions of the composer in their own music.  And Lenny was notorious for doing that, especially with scores of dead composers.  Really, you have absolutely no idea what you're talking about.  Read Gunther Schuller, who knew Bernstein, especially before he became a spoiled celebrity when Schuller played horn for some of his performances.

Bernstein, one of the most overrated and adulated conductors of recent times rarely practiced what he preached – a sad fact given his enormous basic natural talent, musical and conductorial/gestural.  In his Joy of Music, he wrote, for example, “perhaps the chief requirement of all is that [the conductor] be humble before the composer;  that he never interpose himself between the music and the audience;  that all his efforts, however strenuous or glamorous, be made in the service of the composer's meaning – the music itself, which, after all, is the whole reason for the conductor's existence” (The Joy of Music, New York, 1954, p. 156).  It is as perfect and beautiful a statement about the art and philosophy of music as can be found.  It is all the more saddening and perplexing that Bernstein rarely followed his own credo.

Gunther Schuller, The Compleat Conductor p. 89

So, you see, Simps, even as you claim otherwise in defense of Lenny Bernstein's celebrity distortions of the score, he, himself, agreed with me, in principle, at least on paper, though not at the podium.

Update:  Simps is making a ridiculous analogy between a musical composition and a stage play as if the media are at all comparable in substance or the exigencies for any given piece to exist were analogous. Proving that as a musician, it's all TV to him.   Classical composition exists within a far tighter range of possible variation than a stage play, that is especially true as what is communicated and what it addresses are so different.  To perform even an opera does, actually, mean you make some stab at performing what the composer wrote, no matter what the idiot director and production designers have cooked up by way of novelty - which can ruin even a brave effort to remain faithful to the intentions of the composer and librettist.

As I pointed out, his hero, Leonard Bernstein, agreed with me, in principle even as he did the career gratifying and composer insulting thing of crapping all over the music to appeal to a more vulgar and ignorant audience - many of whom scribbled garbage about the music as "critics".  There were far, far better conductors of his generation who could have done so much better with the resources that the board of the NYPO gave him.   The difference between a performance that ignores the intent of the composer and one that succeeds in honoring the intent of the composer is great and, as it turns out,  such composers as Beethoven, Brahms, Mahler, etc. knew better how to communicate their intentions than the spoiled NY Philarmonic and later Leonard Bernstein.  As I said, he had that right to decide for his own music but he had no right to abuse his fame and position to do it to the music of other composers.  He was hardly the only one but, as Gunther Schuller documented in his vast and minutely detailed and documented study of recorded performances, at every point consulting accurate scores noting the performance instructions of the composer, he ranked up there with the worst of them.   I, somehow, doubt that even Bernstein would have welcomed some other conductor making a botch of his music in a similar way.   I would be curious to know if he ever complained about others abusing his far more modest compositional efforts.

Saturday Night Audio Play - Canadian Gothic

The past few years I've come to really love audio drama, what used to be called radio drama back when radio aspired to be something other than a way to make money and spread propaganda.  I don't mean the "golden age of radio" stuff, though some of that was pretty good, or at least listenable.  In some ways, due to podcasting, it's come into its own as a neglected but really artistic form.   There are thousands of them available online, old and new.  As with all of art,  most of them are garbage but a lot of them are really good.  I would expect it's a lot easier to try something with serious ideas and artistic ambition behind it when you do it in sound.  As I said, some of them are actually ambitious and some of those are quite good, even fine.  Some of them even thought provoking.  Here is one that was broadcast on the old NPR series "Ear Play" from back when NPR had some aspirations to be better than it became.

Canadian Gothic by Joanna M. Glass  

Joanna Glass has written a number of plays, including one I'd love to see or at least read called "Trying" about the judge Francis Biddle as a grouchy old man.  I don't have any idea what Ms. Glass did with him but I'd love to know more about his reaction to having the Nazis whose trial he presided over citing his mentor, Oliver Wendell Holmes, jr.'s Buck v. Bell decision in defending their own extreme eugenics for which they were tried.  I doubt he ever said, though investigating what that might have been like would be interesting to think about.   I doubt I'll ever get to see a stage production of the play, revivals of even interesting plays being so expensive and, so, rare.  I wish someone would make an audio play version.  

"Neighborliness Always Means Curbing Some Practices of Privilege and Entitlement From Some"

My piece this morning has not gotten any complaints yet.  I suspect my usual detractors sleep in late on Saturdays.  But here is a recent talk with questions taken in which Walter Brueggemann takes up some of the same ideas in the piece.   He may not agree with me about the privilege of the media to lie with impunity but I certainly think that is one of the things that will have to be curbed if we are even to have a chance of escaping the disaster we are on the verge of.  He mentions the Trump Campaign and, in response to the questions, mentions Bernie Sanders, though he doesn't explicitly endorse him, he certainly endorses some of what he's said.   He also notes that he's realistic enough to know that things are a lot more complicated than simply expecting that things are going to change in a short time, though he anticipates that they may change much faster than people in older age cohorts expect them to.

Carl Nielsen - Quintet op. 43

Dora Seres, flute
Egils Upatnieks, oboe/english horn
Egīls Šēfers, clarinet
David M.A.P. Palmquist, horn
Niels Anders Vedsten Larsen, bassoon


Carl Neilsen is one of those composers whose skill and talent I can hear but, for some reason I don't know, not a single piece of his I have ever heard has ever moved me.  I know that isn't the reaction of most other people, he's a composer who goes in and out of popularity, there was a major revival in interest in his music in the United States in the 1970s.   I hope you're someone who he does speak to but I doubt he ever will to me after fifty years of listening.

Update:  Anyone who believes Lenny Bernstein could conduct a "definitive" performance of any piece of music he didn't compose, himself, is too stupid to have an important opinion about music. And that isn't even getting to the FACT that Bernstein was one of the most notorious distorters of musical scores who ever had a major career.  Gunther Schuller documented that in his classic study of recorded performances and their deviation from or adherence to the stated intentions of the composer, The Compleat Conductor.

Apart from pre-recorded electronic composition without any live performance elements, the common declaration that this or that performance is "definitive" is the creation of idiot critics who don't know enough about music to have an important opinion about music.   As just about every composer who has ever performed or conducted their own music performs a composition differently every time they perform it, especially those pieces which rely on soloists, singers, other performers, the entire concept of "definitive performances" is professional critic bull shit.


I am going to stop posting pieces daily because my eyesight isn't up to it.  I will try posting every other day or so, taking the time to more carefully edit what I write.  I may post music and lectures on other days but I really can't keep up the every day writing.  If my eyesight and health improve I will go back to daily postings. 

Our Jerusalem Laid Waste By Lies And Injustice

Great as the sea is your downfall;
who can heal you?
Your prophets had for you
false and specious visions;
They did not lay bare your guilt,
to avert your fate;
They beheld for you in vision
false and misleading portents.


If you substitute "media" for prophets, both news and, more potently, entertainment, how it encourages selfishness and consumption and ignorance and sloth, pretty much the entire range of deadly sins, those old "bronze age goat herders" got our number right down to the last significant digit.

I am trying to remember the last time I heard the news on the radio carry a positive piece about Hillary Clinton or, really much of any piece about her.  As compared to Donald Trump she has been pretty much disappeared from coverage and what there is is never positive.  It couldn't be clearer that the Washington-New York media knows it is supposed to avoid saying anything good about Hillary Clinton and like the dutiful functionaries of oligarchy which they are, they follow the same lines laid down for them in the 1990s.

Instead it is covering the "reality" TV king, idiot, the shame of the Republican Party who they are trying to make the same of the nation, Donald Trump.

And that's only what our media does in politics, in encouraging self-destructive socially destructive attitudes and patterns of behavior they pretty much guarantee that a Donald Trump figure will arise and prosper.   The only real criticism of him I've found to be widespread in the media is his short-lived declaration that he was going to reinstitute libel and slander laws - so novel an idea, today in an age ruled by lies. rumor and gossip, that it freaked them out.  Most of them having absolutely no knowledge or skills in reporting fact, not even any appreciation of the difference between a lie and a fact that they'd, most of them, be out of work.   It freaked them out so much that they didn't seem to realize that there was no figure in public life who would have more to lose from that as Donald Trump so he was not likely the one who was going to do that.

I doubt that Hillary Clinton would either, the legal dogmas of the past half century are so wedded to deny the importance of the truth, of fact in most areas of life, especially politics, that the idea probably wouldn't occur to her or anyone likely to be appointed.   You would think that she might have a heightened appreciation for that distinction because she has certainly been the public figure most long and most lavishly lied about.  I could be wrong about her getting it, I doubt that she would think the effort to make lies have consequences for the media was a wise one politically.  For a start she would have to convince sitting Supreme Court justices that it was dangerous to democracy to allow media to lie for its owners profit.

No, the idea that there is no overriding and supreme legitimate interest in people in a democracy to have the truth told to them, and not only them but all voters, is an insane notion instilled, no less by officially liberal institutions and figures than it has been corporate-fascist subverters of democracy and the ability of the entire electorate to have the chance to cast an accurately informed vote.  The ACLU, such figures as Joel Gora, the trade groups of media and the publishing industry, etc. all bought into that and it is among their most cherished of secular commandments that the media shall be permitted to lie with impunity for any reason its owners and scribblers see fit.  Our inability to have a democracy, to keep what we have from descending into Republicanfascism is as much a result of the ridiculous faith that such notions as democracy were the product of natural law, that the truth will out - by what mechansim who knows - and that even a people fed on a diet of lies would be able to maintain democracy.   The first amendment, no less than the second one carries the foolish 18th century poetry that enables the destruction of democracy and ourselves because so many of the founders were addled by the idiotic notions that the government they thought they were founding was the product of natural forces.

If the men who wrote the First Amendment had been wise, they would have noted that superior to any right of the media  to say whatever they chose to was the right of The People to know the truth in order that they could secure all of the goods promised in the rest of the document, and, so any right of the media was to serve that end.  "The press" is an entirely artificial entity and a magnification of the power of those who owned it.  There is no natural right for "the press" it is an artificial privilege granted on the tacit expectation that they would tell the truth, idiotically granted without explicitly stating that, most important, role of the media as a condition of them keeping it.  I think it was their superstitious enlightenment notions that led to that fatal omission.

Democracy doesn't just happen by natural forces in the absence of coercion .  It isn't the product of forces like gravity that just come out in the right place.  Democracy is a product of moral choices made by people, many of which are not compatible with the adulation of the self and are certainly not in the immediate interest of any one person.  The first of those moral choices is to know the truth, even when it is in contradiction to false and specious visions that are gratifying.  It is that you must know the truth even if it lays forth your guilt in order to change your behavior to avert the results of that behavior  That moral choice is everything the media in the United States and in most other countries discourages and doesn't practice.  And that's true no matter what poetic words those fat-headed founders put into the truncated amendments to the Constitution.  If you don't know the truth, you will not be free because you can't make those choices necessary to face reality and chose it over "reality" TV.

Friday, June 24, 2016

György Ligeti - Ten Pieces for Wind Quintet

Celine Nessi - Flute
Eric Cassen - Oboe
Romain Guyot - Clarinet
Laurent Lefèvre - Bassoon
Laurent Olle - Horn

Ligeti shows that a small ensemble can sound like a small orchestra if the composer's ear is big enough.  

Simps Is Unhappy That I Dissed TV Again

Update:   You should learn what a calendar is and how it works.

What's In A Name?

This is the first of two videos issued last week and this by Quaker Speak.  Apparently the big issue of the first one was the use of the term "Kingdom of God" which many people took offense to.  

Here is the second one responding to the offense expressed.

Now, I won't take second place to anyone as an opponent of kings and royalty and class distinction but I really don't see why anyone should get into a swivet over the use of "Kingdom of God" which is certainly not the same thing.  It was one of the things I found most irritating in the Jesus Seminar documents that they used the term "imperial rule" as in "God's imperial rule" or "heaven's imperial rule" which I thought was just silly and entirely beside the point.   I was a one-time enthusiast for the Jesus Seminar but its work has aged really fast and not entirely well.  I've come to see a lot of it as misguided and a product of fashion. You're not going to get what the authors of biblical texts meant without a lot of consideration of what they were talking about to start with and to pretend that people are going to mistake God for someone like a British or Spanish or some other monarch is just silly.  

I heard a priest recently point out that when Jesus said that the Shema was the highest commandment, along with the commandment to love others as you love yourself he actively identified love of God with the love of the least among us, the dregs of society, those least exalted and loved, the unwanted and unsentimentalized and the most unworthy poor.  There is nothing more radical in any human articulation than the identification of God with the least among us.  That is the Kingdom of God, a society which takes that as its meaning and its practice and nothing could be more unlike any kingdom of this world.

"This question the Dodo could not answer without a great deal of thought" Come On Sanders, Say It

Bernie Sanders has finally said that he's going to vote for Hillary Clinton, which you would think was exactly the same thing as endorsing her but NPR and other media are saying that it isn't an endorsement.   I don't know how you can avoid seeing that as an endorsement but, then, they are all bending every which way to try to defeat Hillary Clinton, disappearing her from media coverage, most notably.  If Sanders really wants to defeat Trump he could spend his time pointing that out instead of wasting it on transparently meaningless poses.

As noted here yesterday, the Bernie or Busters are still all over the comment threads and a few idiots among them seem to be turning Hillary Hatin' into a career venture.  Thomas Frank, some of Salons' click-bait generators, they're still churning that out.   Sanders should also tell them to can it.

I challenged Bernie Sanders to test the loyalty of his self-appointed biggest supporters by endorsing Hillary Clinton, the only person standing between the world and a Donald Trump presidency and will be curious to see what they're saying about his declaration that he will be doing what so many of them are declaring they won't do.   I wonder how many of them are going to discover, all of a sudden, that they hate the guy they love.

Sanders is still making a big deal of the entirely unimportant platform - from what I've seen about the platform hearings, they aren't any less useless than they have ever been.  Platform fights are grandstanding especially by those who love to grandstand, no more important or principled than that. If Bernie Sanders can recover his status as a serious person will depend on how long he keeps this stuff up.  A truly serious person would have stopped it by the end of April.

I really wish they'd cut the platform crap.  It's no less a holdover from the less democratic 19th century than caucuses. Which makes me think of this.

 'In that case,' said the Dodo solemnly, rising to its feet, 'I move that the meeting adjourn, for the immediate adoption of more energetic remedies — '

'Speak English!' said the Eaglet. 'I don't know the meaning of half those long words, and, what's more, I don't believe you do either!' And the Eaglet bent down its head to hide a smile: some of the other birds tittered audibly.

'What I was going to say,' said the Dodo in an offended tone, 'was, that the best thing to get us dry would be a Caucus-race.'

'What is a Caucus-race?' said Alice; not that she wanted much to know, but the Dodo had paused as if it thought that somebody ought to speak, and no one else seemed inclined to say anything.

'Why,' said the Dodo, 'the best way to explain it is to do it.' (And, as you might like to try the thing yourself, some winter day, I will tell you how the Dodo managed it.)

First it marked out a race-course, in a sort of circle, ('the exact shape doesn't matter,' it said,) and then all the party were placed along the course, here and there. There was no 'One, two, three, and away,' but they began running when they liked, and left off when they liked, so that it was not easy to know when the race was over. However, when they had been running half an hour or so, and were quite dry again, the Dodo suddenly called out 'The race is over!' and they all crowded round it, panting, and asking, 'But who has won?'

This question the Dodo could not answer without a great deal of thought, and it sat for a long time with one finger pressed upon its forehead (the position in which you usually see Shakespeare, in the pictures of him), while the rest waited in silence. At last the Dodo said, 'everybody has won, and all must have prizes.'

Really, look at the rules for any caucus and Lewis Carroll got it pretty much nailed and he described the results of platform fights, as well.

Sanders, just say it.  No one is going to care about the platform the day after the election, no one will ever mention it again for any positive purpose.
I don't have any strong opinions on the vote in Britain to leave the EU, though I don't like what I'm hearing.  I am struck at how the rising neo-fascist views in France, the Netherlands and the United States all oppose the EU, it makes me wonder the extent to which the European Union is a convenient scapegoat for sleazy politicians when the problems people are having are the creation of national and state governments - the United States where the Republicanfascists have made a lot of hay about states-rights and in opposition to the government of the country shows that's a way for fascists to gain power.  There are a lot of countries where fascists will be looking to benefit from this vote, not the least the United States where Donald Trump is praising it, perhaps, ironically, from his hideous golf-course in Scotland.  I had wondered if the Brexit vote had come before the Scottish referendum for independence if that vote might have gone the other way and I just heard that a second referendum is in the works.  Perhaps they can leave and get rid of Trump.  You have to wonder if, at some future date, Wales might opt to leave Britain, as well.  If it led to the break up of Britain that wouldn't necessarily be the worst thing that could happen.

I doubt that most of the people who voted on the question really knew much about it or the consequences of their decision.  Boris Johnson and his anti-EU forces clearly lied about the possibility of keeping the benefits of the EU as they left it.  I hope that they realize they were lied to as they were sold those lies.  Though I doubt Brit TV is going to tell them that anymore than American TV tells the truth about the consequences of American Republican misrule.  I wonder, when people vote on the basis of lies they've been sold if you can count that as democracy.   I think to use the word when people vote on the basis of lies is both wrong and dangerous.  Marine Le Pen, the French fascist leader, touted the vote as a great victory for democracy.  When a fascist uses the word that way you have to question if it has any meaning at all.

The Worst Things Anyone Did In the Orlando Shootings Were Done By Genteel Supreme Court Justices And Almost Exclusively Republican Politicians

I have watched the interview Univision's Maria Elena Salinas did with a man "Miguel" who had a sexual and personal relationship with Omar Mateen.  Considering the content of the interview, it has  which has gotten surprisingly little play.  If it is true then the murder and maiming at the Pulse nightclub in Orlando is a lot more about the access of guns to potentially violent messed up and mentally ill people than ISIS or international terrorism.

The man, "Miguel" wanted his name, appearance and voice disguised because he fears for his safety, which is entirely reasonable.  He has also, voluntarily, told what he knows to the FBI.  I can't see any reason for him to make it up.

Miguel said that he had a two-month sexual relationship with Mateen and that Mateen had had sexual relationships with other men.  He mentions that Mateen advertised on gay hook-up aps, he met him through Grindr but he says he knew Mateen had also looked for men to have sex with on two other aps.   Most significantly he said that Mateen was involved in a sexual three-some with two Puerto Rican men, one of whom, later, revealed that he was HIV-positive.  Apparently Mateen discussed that with Miguel.   Miguel speculates that Mateen specifically targeted Pulse on Latin night in an act of revenge against gay Puerto Ricans.  It was why Miguel said he doesn't believe terrorism had anything to do with it. From the transcript:

Miguel: To tell you the truth, after we had the conversation about the two Puerto Rican[s] who he have the threesome and then one of the Puerto Ricans told him ‘I’m HIV positive and I’m sorry I don’t say nothing’. Plus, all the rejections he got. I believe, I really think all his anger – he [hated] gay Puerto Ricans for all the bad thing[s] they [did] to him. This will sound bad and I know a lot of people going to get a lot of pain for what I’m going to say. But I believe this crazy horrible thing he did – that was a revenge.

MES: You think this was not terrorism.

Miguel: Not at all. Like I told to the FBI if you are a terrorist and you really wanna kill a lot of people you don’t go to Pulse. Pulse is nothing compared to Parliament. Parliament is a disco, a hotel and a bar. And [a lot of people go there].

He also says that Mateen was deeply conflicted about his sexual identity and, especially, the attitude of his own father about it.  He said it was his father who forced Mateen to get married.   From what Mateen's first wife has said about him, that she suspected he was gay and mentally ill and violent towards her, Miguel's narrative about Mateen having married to please his father is a reasonable suspicion.

If this is true then the use to which Omar Mateens' ethnic and religious background are being put by Republicanfascists  in politics and in the media is a total distortion of what happened for the basest of political purposes.  If Miguel is right then there are a number of things to be learned from it but the biggest is that it is insane to allow people to buy automatic weapons in civilian life, that the gun industry, the gun nuts and their political and judicial servants have created the conditions where a screwed up man can kill large numbers of people in a short time - that's what automatic weapons were invented to do, to kill lots of people in a short amount of time.  And if you want to see what the most screwed up part of this whole, horrible story is, that's it.   Omar Mateen may have been a seriously screwed up guy, he might have been full of hate and - according to a man who apparently knew him and talked to him - motivated by a desire for revenge against a specific identity of people, but it was the Supreme Court justices, the Republican politicians - and a handful of Democrats and independents, who kow towed to the interests of the gun industry and the NRA who put the gun into his hand which allowed him to commit the act he committed.  If he had a knife or a plain old fashioned six shooter it's certain the body count would have been lower.

That the gay club where Miguel met Mateen was called the Parliament has a certain irony to it.  It is too bad it wasn't called "the Senate" or The Congress or the Supreme Court because that's where the people who armed him gather to do far worse than anyone else ever did to Mateen.   They are the ones who armed Omar Mateen and gave him the power to do what he did with his screwed up mind and his messed up life.

I don't think anything short of someone going into the Congress like Mateen did or the Supreme Court or some gathering of the Republicanfascist elite would change what they have done.  The only way we can change that is by removing the fascists from the government and making laws that take automatic weapons out of the civilian population and really crack down on the gun industry which will find some way to sell their killing machines on the black market.  The Roberts and Rehnquist Courts are the major source of this depravity, as Samantha Bee's show pointed out, even Warren Berger said that the gun industry was the source of the lie that gun control was unconstitutional, a position which became the standard one in the Republican Party and among Republican judges and Justices.  The Supreme Court majority has made gun industry lies and propaganda the law of the land.  Even Ronald Reagan got that much of it, after he got shot.

Thursday, June 23, 2016

Mad Kane - Trump Has Been Passing Off Paste As Diamonds For Years

I was amused to learn that Trump has been duping friends with fake diamond cuff link gifts for years.

Read her limerick on it here.   

Call Him Zircon Jim, the icon of the as-seen-on-TV gilded age.  If we're lucky he'll go down as the most ridiculous presidential candidate a major party has ever nominated.  If we're merely unlucky instead of cursed he'll be the most ridiculous and not horrific president we've ever had, him or someone the Republicans find to take his place.  Though I've got a feeling if they pulled something like that his insane fans would turn to major violence.  I'm serious about that, they are real Brown Shirt style fascists.  

Leoš Janáček - Youth - Wind Sextet

Prague Wind Quintet
Jan Hecl, flute
Jiří Krejčí, oboe
Ludmila Peterková, clarinet
Vladimíra Klánská, horn
Lumír Vaněk, basson
Petr Čáp, bass clarinet

I think I've got the players right


Bernie or Busters Are Still Out There And Campaigning For Trump - An Exchange

From what I'm coming to see as the ironically named lefty website, "Truthout".

CoCoLuv9491  Anthony_McCarthy • 8 hours ago

CTR meme #471. "Sanders wouldn't stand a chance after the first week after he got the nomination." Damn those pesky polls that say otherwise. I know... we need to ignore them because... the Red Queen.

Anthony_McCarthy  CoCoLuv9491 • in 2 minutes

First, he lost the most important poll, the popular vote for the nomination. If you think that the universe of those who were likely to vote for him in the general election was better disposed to his campaign than the one which voted in the Democratic primary season that borders on the delusional. Second, I doubt that those who said they were more likely to vote for him knew those items in his past mentioned above and they were certainly not exposed to any kind of sustained airing of those facts. At this point the only candidate who can be said to be widely known in any depth is Hillary Clinton who was publicly subjected to the most sustained questioning and campaign of exaggeration and lies which any living American politician has stood up to.

Polls as a method of divination are certainly inferior to the actual voting of millions of people, if you want to know why, look at the numbers of people who are polled, generally in the low thousands when not an even more obviously inadequate sample. And it asks them to speculate on what they will do months into the future. Compared that to the actual votes of actual voters, polls asserted to tell you anything with any security are a joke.

I'm really interested in how many times the Bernie voters talk about queens and royalty when talking about Hillary Clinton. I smell a strong whiff of misogyny in that, not to mention rank dishonesty. If there is anyone who has not had the royal treatment in American politics, it's Hillary Clinton.

By the way, memes are pseudo-scientific myth, they don't exist. Even Dawkins walked back from them after he invented them.